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Kraftwerk - Radio-Activity (Radio-Aktivität) CD (album) cover

RADIO-ACTIVITY (RADIO-AKTIVITÄT)

Kraftwerk

 

Progressive Electronic

3.10 | 119 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

zravkapt
Special Collaborator
Post/Math Rock Team
3 stars This album doesn't get the praise that Autobahn and Trans Europe Express does, but it's more interesting and dare I say more 'proggy' than those two. More electronic and influential than Autobahn but not as well known. This is the first Kraftwerk album to not feature flute or any other non-electric instruments. Instead we get some of the first use of vocoder and an Orchestron, which is similar to a Mellotron. The only major use of vocoder before this was on the A Clockwork Orange soundtrack. After Radio-Aktivitat it became more widely used.

This is sort of a concept album about radiation and a radio broadcast. The album begins with a synth-generated Geiger Counter sound. It speeds up indicating that it has found radiation. At this point we are already into the title track. You hear Orchestron and Morse Code. Rhythmic sequencers and piano-like synth. Normal clean vocals in this song. Electronic percussion. Ends with just Orchestron. "Radioland" has tom-tom like electronic percussion. More Orchestron and clean vocals. Synth noises come and go. Later some vocoder vocals. "Airwaves"/"Atherwellen" is a poppier song similar to the groups later 'techno-pop' stuff.

"Antenne" is another poppy song with an echo/delay effect on the vocals. Lots of synth sounds on this song. "Radio Sterne/Stars" is just synths and vocoder. It sounds like someone keeps saying "down, down, down". "Uranium" is just Orchestron and vocoder. "Transister" is an instrumental with great synth. "Ohm Sweet Ohm" begins with vocoder vocals repeating the title. Around the one minute mark an electro beat starts. There is an Orchestron part which sounds like a church organ at a funeral. Gradually more electronic percussion and Orchestron appear. The tempo slowly increases throughout the song.

This is one of Kraftwerk's most consistent and proggy albums. Yet, it's still nothing essential. Very influential but also dated. This album would make a great introduction to this group for a progger. For 1975 this is progressive, but of course most of the music influenced by this is not prog. Good album anyway. 3 stars.

zravkapt | 3/5 |

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